Today is Elder Abuse Awareness Day and the Victoria Community Response Network doubled its efforts at awareness to mark the event.
A statement by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon made the key point for Bridey Morrison Morgan, Regional Mentor Victoria Community Response Network.
His statement last year for Elder Abuse Awareness Day finished: “The distressing crime of elder abuse often occurs in quiet, private settings, making a vocal, public response that much more important. Let us strengthen our resolve to end this problem as part of our broader efforts to create a life of dignity for all.”
“It really sort of struck me,” said Morrison Morgan.
“In those few sentences he encapsulated what elder abuse is all about. It occurs in a quiet private way and we need to highlight to the public their need to be active and engaged as opposed to being bystanders in looking out for our elders in the community.”
Last year the Victoria CRN offered two public information sessions, one in James Bay and one in Oak Bay.
This year they’re adding two more to offer new material through the BC Community Response Network through the federal program It’s Not Fair, developed by Western Education, Centre for Research and Education on Violence against Women and Children.
“We can try to serve and reach out to all residents of Victoria,” Morrison Morgan said.
“We have a shared responsibility to promote respect for all members of our society. Everyone has a role to play.”
Today Victoria CRN hosts four session of It’s Not Right! Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults: at James Bay Community Project from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.; Shoal Centre in Sidney from 1:30 to 3 p.m.; Yakimovich Activity Centre in the Hillside Seniors Health Centre from 1:30 to 3 p.m. and the Monterey centre 7 to 8:30 p.m.
“The program is focussing on getting information out to the public at large that they have a role and responsibility to be watching in our individual communities. Looking out for elders or seniors who might be experiencing some sort of abuse,” Morrison Morgan said.
“And abuse is not just physical, it can be financial and psychological. It can be neglect and self-neglect.”
Participation is open to all neighbours, friends and families of older adults. Complimentary refreshments will be provided. Call 250-370-7300 to reserve a seat. For more information visit bccrns.ca.
For more information about the local Community Response Network email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Did you know?
* Development of It’s Not Right! Neighbours, Friends and Families for Older Adults. In 2009, Western Education, Centre for Research and Education on Violence against Women and Children was asked by the Public Health Agency of Canada to adapt the Ontario domestic violence public education campaign, Neighbours, Friends and Families for abuse of older adults. The Canadian Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse as well as professionals and passionate advocates from all over the country contributed to the development of the materials through a highly collaborative process over a year-long period. The resulting materials represent the very best collective thinking in Canada for public education on abuse and neglect of older adults. Visit itsnotright.ca to learn more about the program.